May 9, 2011 2:36 pm

HP’s new commercial & consumer laptops bring beauty and brains

It was a busy morning for our friends at HP! Earlier today they announced a number of new notebooks from their consumer and commercial lineup, and from what I’ve seen so far, they look great.

On the consumer side of things, HP announced the newly redesigned Mini 210 netbook, which now includes Beats Audio and comes in a range of bright new colors, and the dv4, a 14”, sub-5lb full-feature notebook that is the successor to last year’s HP dm4, which I heavily recommended as one of the best all-purpose everyday PCs out there. There’s also a newly refreshed version of HP’s premium ENVY 14, which now sports second-generation Intel Core processors and HP’s new BrightView Infinity LED display.

On the commercial side HP beefed up both its mid-range ProBook and high-end EliteBook lineups with the introduction of the super thin ProBook 5330m, and the ultraportable EliteBook 2560p and 2760p. The 2760p is a convertible tablet, too, so you can type, touch, or write on it, just like slightly older (but still awesome) 2740p that Brandon carries with him as his enterprise grade laptop.

HP was cool enough to get me a pre-release look at the ProBook 5330m last week, and while I didn’t have time to do a full test run on it, I did have the chance to kick the proverbial tires. All in all, it’s a very good mid-range business laptop, with powerful specs (mine had a second-gen Core i5 processor, TPM to enable BitLocker, and a backlit keyboard), and a very, very reasonable $799 starting price tag.

Performance was good, and like its consumer brethren, it has a beautiful rich display and Beats Audio for great sound. I didn’t put the 5330m under a full test load due to the brevity of test time I had with it, but judging from the impressive WEI scores, I’m sure that it would handle a normal day’s workload without breaking a sweat.

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What really made me take notice was the 5330m’s industrial design. Its all aluminum and less than 1” thick, and it has a squared off, professional look that has a nice presence when you put it on a desk. It’s perfectly balanced and can be opened with one hand, and that backlit keyboard is bright and clear.

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I really like what HP is doing with their commercial laptops; they’ve successfully taken the best of their long history of enterprise durability, ergonomics, and pure performance and melded them with the sleek lines, great displays and booming sound of their consumer PCs.

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The 5330m is available today, as is the EliteBook 2760p, from HP.com. The new Mini 210 and ENVY 14 will be available on June 15th, the dv4 on May 18th, and the EliteBook 2560p on May 23rd. For more detail, check out the press release.

Have a question about this or any other PCs? Post a comment, hit me on Twitter, or Ask Ben Anything via email!

Updated November 7, 2014 9:55 pm